Take a photograph

sorabji.com: What have you failed to do?: Take a photograph

By JusMiceElf on Sunday, March 19, 2000 - 02:21 pm:

    I was out walking my dog today through the old State Mental Hospital near my house, and thought I'd take a few pictures, since it's such a beautiful day out. The hospital has been closed for several years now; there are a couple of buildings still in use, one as offices for the Department of Mental Health, one as a transitional shelter for homeless folks, and one as a residence for a local substance abuse program.

    I stopped to take a picture of a vine snaking up this pole on the outside of one of the buildings, when the security guard rolled down the window of her K car, and told me "No pictures." When I asked why, she told me "Security reasons." Now, I don't see how the photo I was about to take, or any of the others I contemplated along my walk would have jeopardized anyone's security, so this pretty much smacks of "I told you so" to me. I certainly wasn't planning on taking pictures of the women at the Honor Court, the substance abuse program, or in fact of any people.

    Perhaps the state is embarassed at the deplorable condition of some of the buildings? The city had to close down part of a street recently, because the smokestack of the old power plant is dropping bricks. This is located near where they want to build a bike path. Oops!

    Or maybe the security guard just had a bug up her ass. Last year, she got all huffy when she discovereed that we were about to have a cross country race on trails through the woods. This despite the fact that the races have been running weekly for twelve years, and the race organizers had been honored by the mayor.

    At any rate, I plan to call the Department of Mental Health, and get a written copy of the policy. I'm also curious if she can prevent me from taking photographs if I'm not actually on the state property. Can I take pictures from the street? Patrick, do you have any idea about that?

By patrick on Monday, March 20, 2000 - 12:34 pm:

    just take the picture and run. the fact they have told you that you can't would be fuel to my fire as well.

By JusMiceElf on Monday, March 20, 2000 - 05:19 pm:

    That's pretty much how I feel. I still want to call DMH and tell them that either their policy or their security guard sucks. Given how many pictures of the grounds and buildings are floating around, they don't enforce it very well.

By patrick on Monday, March 20, 2000 - 05:50 pm:

    if i recall, you had said before you are in the New England area. Are any of these by chance the place you are referring to. I find these sites fascinating.

    same place diff site

    just curious

    in Raleigh, there was this old burned down catholic church/orphanage. Supposedly, a nun went crazy and burned it down in the 60s, killing almost all of the children. Now, when you walk around it, it's overgrown and very creepy. You see bruned, dirty kids clothes buried under brush, debris...i even found an old baby rattler. Kids have said that at night, they have been able to hear what sounds like children playing and other related sounds. Typical I know, but damn fascinating to think of.

By JusMiceElf on Monday, March 20, 2000 - 06:38 pm:

    The first link is it. It's quite a site, most of the buildings are crumbling, there are unused tunnels under the street. There's also this big flat field that's rumored to be a burial site for many of the inmates. They used to run a farm on the grounds, and there are woods and cornfields, as well as a field that's been turned into a community gardens site. There is something eerie about wanderin around among all the abandonned buildings.

    I've been in buildings at Worcester State Hospital (in use) and one abandonned building at Con

    See http://darkspire.org/asylums/ for history and pictures of other state hospitals.

By The Dinner Lady on Tuesday, March 21, 2000 - 10:40 am:

    Who knew Shaggy and Scooby lived in Danvers? I better get down there right away in time for Scooby Snacks.


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